Five constructions are currently underway

Development: After waiting for decades, Gola bazaar in Sipsu, Samtse is seeing some development of late.

Having received approval from the dzongkhag early this year, five residents have started constructing buildings. Rainfall has not deterred works on the two-storey buildings. In the next five years, 52 two-storey buildings will come up in Gola town.

Namgay, a tshogpa of the town committee, has already decided how his building will be occupied.

“I will lease out one space for a restaurant,” he said, adding that the other two spaces would be leased out for shops. “I have dreamt of this since 2013.”

Namgay plans to have the top floor as his residence.

Gola residents have only five years to complete the construction of their buildings. Should they fail, the government will penalise the plot owners accordingly as indicated by dzongkhag officials.

Construction of buildings is not only the development Gola bazaar will be witnessing. A ring road circling the town is also underway.

The first cutting of the ring road has been completed. Tender works on soiling and draining of the ring road has also been awarded. In addition, a protection wall for the safety of the ring road is ongoing at the moment. The wall will be completed within two months, following which remaining works on the ring road would ensue, residents said.

A new water source has also been identified for the town about 10 kilometres (km) away from Gola. The source, residents said would benefit people immensely including the quality of the drinking water.

However, an issue that keeps Gola business people worried is the haat (market) in Belbotay, a few kilometres from Gola town where non-Bhutanese open their stalls every Sunday.

“All market gets diverted there,” a businessman in Gola bazaar said, adding that the haat fee was minimal compared to miscellaneous costs business entities have to bear in Gola town.

From rice to oil, gas stove and rice cookers, residents said that everything is available at Belbotay haat.

Rajesh Rai | Sipsu